In each of our communities, kids are in urgent need of loving foster homes, especially teens and children with special needs.
By becoming a foster parent, you are providing the care and support these children need to become our community’s next generation. You are helping a child find love, safety and stability at a time when the world around him may be falling apart. You are the person who can help guide her toward her positive future.
A Growing Need
The reality is that the need for foster care is growing in our communities. On any given day, nearly 450,000 children in the U.S. are in foster care. Nearly 265,000 new children enter foster care each year. In the Midwest, that’s an average of one of every 100 children. In poor and underserved areas, the rate is even higher.
Many children entering foster care have experienced abuse or neglect. Some are in care temporarily while their biological family addresses the issues which prompted removal. For those who will never be able to return to their family, foster care is the transition to a new forever home.
Being a foster parent can be an immensely rewarding experience. It’s sharing the small moments, like eating a nutritious meal together at the family dinner table. And the big moments, like developing positive relationships and self-esteem. Above all, it’s about helping a child flourish and grow into a confident, contributing member of the community.
To become a foster parent, families or individuals must meet the following criteria:
- At least 21 years of age
- Single, married or cohabitating
- U.S. citizen by birth or naturalization, or provide lawful immigration status
- No criminal or child abuse/neglect record
- Financially stable
- Good physical, mental and emotional health
- Safe home environment with available space to accommodate the foster child
- Successful completion of all training requirements. See Foster Parent Training/Licensing page for details
- Participate in home assessment/evaluation process to become a licensed foster home
Foster parents receive:
- Training by a licensed Great Circle professional
- Monthly maintenance payments
- 12 days of paid vacation per year and 2 respite days per month
Therapeutic Foster Care
Therapeutic foster care is a higher level of care provided for children who are in transition from residential treatment or whose needs cannot be met through a traditional foster care placement. Generally, families that provide therapeutic foster care have at least a year of previous experience providing foster care.
Therapeutic foster homes provide highly structured, around-the-clock care within a family setting. These families receive extensive, specialized training to meet the elevated needs of the foster child, along with additional 24/7 support from Great Circle, in-home support services and behavioral consultations. While in the home, the children also receive services that support progress toward their treatment goals.
To learn more about therapeutic foster care, click here.
Ready To Foster?
Becoming a foster parent is big decision and you probably have lots of questions.
Great Circle is happy to talk with you about the process and connect you with the person who works with foster families in your area.